Broccoli-Rice Casserole

March 12, 2018
Cheesy Broccoli-Rice Casserole is a perfectly tasty side dish for Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or everyday dinner.  It's classic creamy, cheesy comfort food at its best.

Broccoli-Rice Casserole Image

I'm a true lover of those little local cookbooks put together by church and local charity groups.  I just can't get enough of them, and seem to constantly be buying more ... despite the fact there's no way on this Earth I need yet another cookbook.  However, I just can't seem to help myself.

Some of my favorites?

Carolina Blessings from Children's Home Society of North Carolina tops the list, for sure.  Along with You're Invited from the Junior League of Raleigh, NC and Seaboard to Sideboard from the Junior League of Wilmington, NC.  I just adore the "homey" local recipes shared in these types of books.

This is a perfectly tasty side dish for Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or everyday dinner.  It's classic creamy, cheesy comfort food at its best.

And in these types of little local cookbooks, you'd be hard-pressed not to find a recipe for a version of "homey" broccoli-rice casserole.  It's a comfort food classic that sure makes its appearance in more than its fair share of cookbooks, church suppers, potlucks, and holiday dinners alike.

Cheesy Broccoli-Rice Casserole Image ~ A perfectly tasty side dish for Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or everyday dinner. Classic creamy, cheesy comfort food at its best!

But I've always had just one complaint about most broccoli-rice casseroles ~ they can tend to be on the bland side when it comes to flavor.

To quote our sweet 7-year-old Little Miss H., "Mommy, that's because rice steals flavor."

Very astute for a 7-year-old.  And I think she's absolutely right.

In making this  version of broccoli-rice casserole, I set out to amp up the flavor factor over many of the recipes I've tried.  I made three changes to help increase flavor. 

When mixed in a casserole, rice tends to "dull" the flavors of the other ingredients.  I've always found the non-rice version of broccoli casserole to be more flavorful than rice versions.

So in making this  version of broccoli-rice casserole, I set out to amp up the flavor factor over many of the recipes I've tried.  I made three changes to help increase flavor:

1.  Increased the ratio of broccoli - Most of the classic broccoli-rice casserole recipes I read called for a 10-ounce package of frozen broccoli for 3 cups of cooked rice.  In my opinion, this was way too little broccoli for that much rice.

I increased the broccoli to a full 16-ounce package, and used broccoli florets instead of chopped broccoli.  I think the florets deliver up more flavor, and create a more attractive look in the finished dish than chopped broccoli stalk pieces.  I was much more pleased with this higher ratio of broccoli.

2.  Upped the salt & pepper - Such a simple change can make a big impact on flavor.  When you think about it, this casserole has a lot of rice that needs to get a little jolt of flavor added to it.  I found a full teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper were just what was needed to amp up the flavor factor.

If you're hesitant to put that much, add what you think would be good for you and then taste a little of the mixture before putting it into the baking dish.  Since there is no raw egg in the mixture, it's okay to taste it before it's baked.  Then, just increase the salt and pepper a little at a time if you think it needs adjusting.

3.  Added a touch of garlic powder - Just a small touch of garlic powder ... 1/4 teaspoon ... gave a good little boost of flavor, too.

How to Make Broccoli-Rice Casserole Image

With these three little changes, broccoli-rice casserole got just the little flavor boost I was looking for.  No more too-bland rice for me.

So whether it's for Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or an everyday dinner this Broccoli-Rice Casserole is a perfectly tasty side dish to serve up.  It's truly classic creamy, cheesy comfort food at its best.

Check out these other vegetable casserole favorites:
Broccoli-Rice Casserole with Cheese Image
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broccoli casserole, broccoli casserole recipe, broccoli casserole with rice
Side Dishes
Yield: 10-12 servings

Broccoli-Rice Casserole

Cheesy Broccoli-Rice Casserole is a perfectly tasty side dish for Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or everyday dinner. It's classic creamy, cheesy comfort food at its best.
prep time: 20 Mcook time: 40 Mtotal time: 60 M


  • 3 c. cooked rice (about 1 c. uncooked)
  • 1 (16 oz.) package frozen broccoli florets
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 (10 3/4 oz.) can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1/2 c. milk
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • 2 c. shredded mild or medium cheddar cheese, divided


How to cook Broccoli-Rice Casserole

  1. Thaw broccoli and warm broccoli in the microwave for about 5 minutes; drain very well. Cut any large florets into smaller, bite-sized pieces.
  2. In a bowl, combine warm cooked rice, onion, cream of mushroom soup, milk, salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika, and 1 cup of the shredded cheddar. Stir together until well mixed. Fold in broccoli.
  3. Spoon into a greased 9x13-inch baking dish. Top with remaining 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese.
  4. Bake at 350℉ for 35 - 40 minutes until bubbly and cheese is just beginning to get some golden brown spots.
  1. Frozen chopped broccoli can be used instead of the florets, if desired. I just prefer the florets.
  2.  Casserole may be prepared ahead. Place the broccoli mixture in the casserole dish, top with the cheese, and refrigerate until ready to bake. Increase baking time to 60 - 75 minutes. Cover loosely with foil partway through baking if the cheese begins to brown too much.
Created using The Recipes Generator

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  1. I love this casserole! Have a great first week of spring and thanks so much for sharing your awesome post with FULL PLATE THURSDAY!
    Miz Helen

  2. Could you use fresh broccoli?

  3. My family would love this broccoli rice casserole. Thanks for sharing your recipe at the #HomeMattersParty linky.

  4. I made this tonight and it was amazing. I didn't have cream of mushroom so used cream of chicken and used fresh broccoli instead of frozen. It was so good!!!!

  5. Coming over from Full Plate Thursday to say hi!
    We love Broccoli Rice Casserole and yours looks wonderful!

  6. Here I am, 62 years old and - gasp!- have never in my life had broccoli rice casserole. Say what? But I have seen it pop up here and there over the years on different food/recipe sites. I recently decided to give it a try. After perusing dozens and dozens of different recipes, this is the one I've decided to make. It's the only one I've read that made me say "Yes! This is the one!" I can't wait to try it!

    1. It is never too late! This is the first broccoli casserole my husband ever had and like the rest of the family he loves it. Stop back in and let us know how more about yours.

  7. Crazy there a specific rice you use for this recipe? I'm looking forward to trying it!

  8. Delicious!! Made it with fresh broccoli and turned out great. So fast and easy to make, will be making this again for sure.

  9. That sounds really good! I make a similar casserole but add a bit of diced chicken, mix in the cheese and top it with crushed ritz crackers. I like this simpler version though. Pinned.

  10. This looks really yummy! My mom used to make this all the time, and yours looks just like hers, so I know it's yummy! I'm pinning this recipe for later because my mom never told me how to make it myself! lol Thanks so much for sharing at the Snickerdoodle Create Bake Make Link Party!

  11. This looks so simple and so yummy!! Pinned - Thanks for sharing at the What's for Dinner party. Hope to see you there tomorrow too!

  12. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  13. can I make this and freeze it?

    1. We have never frozen it. Freezing may alter the texture of the rice.

    2. freeze it before the final freezes wonderfully...thaw and bake as directed.

  14. Have you ever added chicken to it?


  16. I noticed with this recipe it say's 3 cups rice and 1 cup uncooked rice.. So what do you do with the 1 cup of uncookrd rice.

    1. Hello Sandy, The recipe says [3 c. cooked rice (about 1 c. uncooked)]. The one cup of uncooked rice will yield the 3 cups of cooked rice. We hope you enjoy.

  17. Could you substitute the milk for almond milk?

    1. While we have never used almond milk, you should be able to substitute. Please let us know how the casserole turns out.

  18. I made this recipe today and took it to a church event. It was so delicious and a big hit with everyone.

    1. Thank you so much for sharing. We love to hear it when readers enjoy one of our recipes.

  19. Do you think I could substitute yellow rice for the white rice? The brand of yellow rice is vigo and it has a bunch of seasonings in it.

    1. I think you could and it would change the taste. Part of the fun in cooking is personalizing recipes. Enjoy!

  20. I added a pound of hamburger and it was so yummy! Thanks for the recipe!

  21. We are not fans of cream soups and wondered if I could make a cheese sauce as a substitute. Thank you

  22. This was the best broccoli rice casserole I’ve ever made and my family just loved it 😊


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